Friday, 22 June 2007

On issues of progress and ugliness

It’s all supposed to be downhill at this point in writing a book. Writers are supposed to surge forwards on a great, liberating rush of words to the finish and enjoy the satisfaction of seeing the loose ends tied up and right restored to the world(s). Well, I’m not sure that I have ever found it to be so, and certainly not with The Infinite Day. It’s a little bit like when you drive a long distance and finally, you can see your destination and rejoice because it is so close. Then suddenly the road bends and you realise there are many turns and diversions before you really reach where you are going. Anyway, we will get there, but it’s a long tiring haul.

One other thing is that this week I have posted again on the Speculative Faith website, which frequently has some very interesting articles; not all mine I have to say.

The one I have done this week includes one of the few discussions that I am aware of as to which parts of Lord of the Rings Adolf Hitler would have liked. It also raises the vexed issue of why we tend to link evil and ugliness. This is actually a tricky one because here the atheistic evolutionists have a neat explanation. They say that it is an essential part of evolution that we seek out mates who are in good shape. In other words, beauty is good and to be sought because it indicates good genes. Ugliness is to be shunned, because it indicates suspect genetic material. I feel there should be a good knockdown argument against this but it eludes me. There are certainly a lot of pretty women married to some jolly ugly men.

Anyway, so the argument goes, it is only a short step for the boundary to be blurred between the physically good and the morally good. You know the devastatingly simple equation: good people are pretty; bad people are ugly. What is more worrying (and really does deserve an act of Parliament to ban it but no one dare propose it), is to assume that all pretty people are good and all ugly people are evil.

One observation here would simply be that this is not an argument the Bible makes. The only real indications we have of Satan’s form are that he can appear as an angel of light. There are no references to Christ’s physical form, only the prophetic hint in Isaiah that he would be disfigured by suffering. God, we are reliably informed, looks on the inside. Would that popular culture did the same.

And now back to The Infinite Day.